Ubuntu to get multi-touch from 10.10


Future releases of Ubuntu are set to feature multi-touch capabilities, starting with the 10.10 version of the OS.

Canonical has announced the launch of uTouch 1.0, providing users and developers with a touch-screen framework that covers applications as well as the OS's kernel.

The company has created an open source gesture recognition engine along with a gesture API so multi-touch can work on applications.

Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth explained the system will enable users to link basic gestures for a smoother experience than other single gesture multi-touch technologies.

"The basic gestures, or primitives, are like individual verbs, and stringing them together allows for richer interactions," Shuttleworth explained in a blog post.

"It's not quite the difference between banging rocks together and conducting a symphony orchestra, but it feels like a good step in the right direction."

Canonical believes multi-touch will be central Linux application use in future and the company is planning to continue collaborating with manufacturers of touch-enabled devices to take such technologies to a wider audience.

From version 10.10 onwards, touch will feature in Ubuntu Netbook, Desktop and Light products.

There is evidently a buzz surrounding the technology. Mozilla recently announced the third beta of Firefox 4 would come with multi-touch functionality.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.